Darlene Hanson has her Masters of Arts in Communication Disorders from Whittier College in California. Within her role as DVU’s Director of Communication Rights Projects, Darlene leads the Communication Disabilities Access Network (CDAN) and works on communication access, including strategic planning.

She is currently in private practice in Southern California. Darlene works with individuals, their support teams, and their families to build communication. Her professional experiences have included work in the public schools, private practice, as a Director of Communication Services for a Non-Profit.

As a speech and language pathologist Darlene conducts assessments in the areas of speech, language, and augmentative communication. Darlene has included Facilitated Communication Training in her assessments and practice since 1991. Over the course of the years she has taught at Chapman University, presented at local, state and national conferences, and conducted trainings on Autism, Augmentative Communication strategies, and Facilitated Communication Training through out the United States.

She is also one of a group of Master Trainers for Facilitated Communication Training, and assisted with the writing of the Best Practice Standards for Facilitated Communication Training distributed through the Institute for Communication and Inclusion of Syracuse University. She is now a Board Member of the Wellspring Guild. Darlene has co-authored research and articles on communication for those with severe communication impairments, and is a co-author of Investigation of Authorship in Facilitated Communication, (Journal of Mental Retardation, Aug. 1996).